Skill Overview – Dragonknight

Nord DragonknightI’m excited to share that we’re back with another ESO skills overview based on the playable build of the game that was showcased at the recent PAX Prime and will be on display next week at London’s Eurogamer Expo. This time around, we’re digging into the Dragonknight class; a magical warrior that draws strength from fire and draconic inspired abilities. Once again, it’s exciting to have these skills out in the public domain, and I hope that this will help facilitate discussion and get you all excited about build possibilities using the Dragonknight base class. Please note that exact damage numbers and ability modifiers have not been listed, as these values are still actively being tweaked in response to ongoing feedback.

 

Ardent Flame

The first skill line for the Dragonknight is called Ardent Flame. This skill line is flame-centric, focusing on fiery attacks and debuffs. The most offensive of the three lines, players that use multiple abilities from the Ardent Flame tree will be more offensively capable, at the expensive of some versatility and defensive tools.

  • [Ultimate] Dragonknight Standard – Plant a standard dealing damage to all nearby enemies and reducing the incoming healing they receive. This also initiates the Shackle synergy.
  • [Active] Fiery Reach – Pull an enemy towards you with a fiery chain, dealing damage.
  • [Active] Searing Strike – Burns the target, dealing damage over time.
  • [Active] Fiery Breath – Deal fire damage to all enemies in front of you, igniting them for additional damage over time.
  • [Active] Lava Whip – Deal fire damage and causes enemies to become off-balance if used on an immobilized or stunned foe.
  • [Active] Inferno – This toggle-able aura deals periodic damage to all nearby enemies while slowly draining the Dragonknight’s Magicka. The damage dealt and Magicka cost increase the longer the aura is active.
  • [Passive] Kindling – Increases the damage of burning effects applied by fire abilities.
  • [Passive] Warmth – Dealing Fire damage applies a snare to enemies.
  • [Passive] Searing Heat – Increases the duration of abilities in the Ardent Flame tree which apply burning.
  • [Passive] World in Flame – Increases the damage of fire-based AoE abilities.
A Dragonknight using Lava Whip on a Flame Atronach

A Dragonknight using Lava Whip on a Flame Atronach

This is a tactically interesting skill line. There’s a lot of synergy here to exploit. I anticipate that in the Ebonheart Pact we’ll be seeing a lot of Dunmer Dragonknights who are seeking to exploit the dark elves’ racial bonus to fire damage. The passives in the Ardent Flame tree will also synergize nicely with the Meteor ultimate in the Mages Guild which calls a fiery explosion from the sky down on your target. This makes for an interesting alternative to Dragonknight Standard, although to be fair, this will be a very difficult ability to displace from the player’s hotbar in PvP contexts. The AoE healing debuff which it applies will be absolutely crucial in group PvP encounters, so much so that every PvP group will likely require a DK to have this ability slotted.

 

Draconic Power

The Dragonknight’s second skill line, Draconic Power, is a more defensive variant, geared towards turning the Dragonknight into a formidable defensive force, whether for tanking in PvE or controlling the battlefield in AvA.

  • [Ultimate] Dragon Leap – Leap forward on magical wings, dealing AoE damage upon landing, knocking nearby foes backwards.
  • [Active] Spike Armor – Increases your damage resistance and returns damage to melee attackers.
  • [Active] Dark Talons – Root all nearby enemies, dealing additional damage to any enemies not already affected by talons.
  • [Active] Dragon Blood – Immediately heals the player and applies a medium-duration heal-over-time.
  • [Active] Reflective Scales – Reflects incoming projectiles for a short period of time.
  • [Active] Inhale – Absorbs health from every nearby enemy, then returns damage to affected foes depending on the total amount of health absorbed.
  • [Passive] Iron Skin – Increase the amount of damage you are able to block.
  • [Passive] Burning Heart – Increase healing received for each dragon ability on your bar.
  • [Passive] Elder Dragon – Increased passive health regeneration for each dragon ability on your bar.
  • [Passive] Scaled Armor – Increases your innate resistance to enemy spells.
A Dragon Leap mid-flight

A Dragon Leap mid-flight

The abilities in this tree complement each other with a mix of control, mitigation, and self-healing. I think Argonian will be a very natural choice for defensive Dragonknights, coupling innate racial healing bonuses with the self-healing multipliers in this tree’s passives. Depending on the magnitude of effect in the final ability, the tandem of Dragon Blood and Inhale could give a Dragonknight remarkable staying power. In many contexts, I could see abilities from this tree being fantastic choices for an alternate hotbar which players can switch to if a fight starts going against them to heal and bunker down against incoming damage.

 

Earthen Heart

The final Dragonknight skill line, Earthen Heart, offers tremendous group utility and control tools which will be hugely useful in both PvE and PvP.

  • [Ultimate] Magma Armor – Limits incoming damage at a maximum percentage of your health per hit while dealing fire damage to all foes around you.
  • [Active] Stonefist – Draws a chunk of rock from the ground, hurling it at an enemy to deal physical damage and knocks down the target.
  • [Active] Molten Weapons – An AoE buff aura which increases the power of nearby allies, with double benefit applied to the Dragonknight.
  • [Active] Obsidian Shield – Create a shield of rock shards around nearby allies, absorbing a percentage of incoming damage they take. The strength of the shield is doubled for the Dragonknight.
  • [Active] Petrify – Applies a long duration stun to the target. The petrified enemy can take some damage while stunned, but sufficient damage will prematurely end the stun.
  • [Active] Ash Cloud – Summon a swirling ash storm, snaring affected foes while increasing their chance to miss. Initiates the Ash Shroud synergy.
  • [Passive] Eternal Mountain – Increase the duration of Earthen Heart abilities.
  • [Passive] Deep Breaths – Activating an Ultimate ability restores resources to the Dragonknight based on the ultimate cost.
  • [Passive] Mountain’s Blessing – Gain additional ultimate charge when activating an Earth ability.
  • [Passive] Helping Hands – Gain Stamina whenever one of your earth abilities is applied to another player.
A Dragonknight hurls the Stonefist ability at a Dwemer Centurion

A Dragonknight hurls the Stonefist ability at a Sphere Centurion

This line is essentially the “support” Dragonknight, featuring two party buffs which increase both the offensive and defensive capabilities of allies. These buffs will be great to slot on an alternate hotbar to use for pre-fight buffing with re-applications cast as necessary. The ultimate ability, Magma Armor, is arguably a better tanking ultimate than the Dragon Leap from the Draconic Power tree, and therefore will likely be very popular amongst tank DKs. The crowd control abilities of Stonefist, Petrify, and Ash Cloud could allow the Earth-specced Dragonknight to serve as a group’s primary CCer, reacting to remove dangerous enemies from the fight. In PvP, a lot of Dragonknights will want to slot Obsidian Shield simply to take advantage of the substantial Stamina heal which Helping Hands would provide when in large-group combat.

I hope this has given the community a useful start towards understanding the Dragonknight abilities in The Elder Scrolls Online, and I look forward to hearing the theorycrafting, discussion, and build ideas which will surround these skills. What stands out to you as the powerful combos in the Dragonknight trees? Which weapon and armor types do you think will synergize best with each tree? Think you will be playing a DK in ESO? Let us know why in the comment section below!

134 responses to “Skill Overview – Dragonknight”

  1. Profile Photo
    Psiberzerker

    Legend

    Total Posts: 7087

    Altmer Templar

    Cool, I’ve been waiting for this!

    Everything above is likely Opinion, and/or subject to change. 

  2. Profile Photo
    Lorelai

    Adept

    Total Posts: 156

    Altmer Sorcerer

    Order of the Crimson Moth

    Thanks for the post! Any idea when you’ll have the Sorcerer and Templar skill overviews?

    ”Halo! Its divine wind will rush through the stars, propelling all who are worthy along the path to salvation.”

  3. Profile Photo
    Atropos

    Administrator

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    Imperial Sorcerer

    Entropy Rising

    Lorelai said on September 16, 2013 :

    Thanks for the post! Any idea when you’ll have the Sorcerer and Templar skill overviews?

    We’re going to try to roll them out pretty rapid-fire now that we got the go-ahead from ZOS. You can expect a Sorcerer post this Friday (barring unforeseen circumstances)!

    Founder, creator, and developer of Tamriel Foundry.

    Guildmaster of Entropy Rising.

    Occasional Twitch Streamer.

  4. Profile Photo
    Lorelai

    Adept

    Total Posts: 156

    Altmer Sorcerer

    Order of the Crimson Moth

    Atropos said on September 16, 2013 :

    Lorelai said on September 16, 2013:

    Thanks for the post! Any idea when you’ll have the Sorcerer and Templar skill overviews?

    We’re going to try to roll them out pretty rapid-fire now that we got the go-ahead from ZOS. You can expect a Sorcerer post this Friday (barring unforeseen circumstances)!

    Hurray! Thanks, Atropos! And thank you, Zenimax Online Studios!

     

    ”Halo! Its divine wind will rush through the stars, propelling all who are worthy along the path to salvation.”

  5. Profile Photo
    LGAllastair

    Master

    Total Posts: 576

    Nord Dragonknight

    Vokundein

    Ardent Flame and Draconic Power… nice combo possibilities indeed.

  6. Profile Photo
    Micanis

    Master

    Total Posts: 527

    Bosmer Templar

    Very nice, I’m thinking about a possible Khajiit Dragonknight mage.

  7. Profile Photo
    Rymguard

    Expert

    Total Posts: 386

    Aldmeri Templar

    I was going to be going to bed early tonight. This has stopped my plans . Since I plan on being a dragon knight ill have to give this a full read through and see what I would like skill wise from this.

  8. Profile Photo
    Gladerunner

    Hero

    Total Posts: 4330

    Bosmer Dragonknight

    Some men just want to watch the world burn.

    Get yours from Nodiatus, with a quick RPG quiz. They didn’t have ”Unthrappa Master”, but we can all settle for second best.

    ”What better insult is there… to outlast your enemies…?”

    ”………The greatest insult… is to be ignored…”

  9. Profile Photo
    Tribe

    Expert

    Total Posts: 442

    @Atropos

    Thank you very much for the article.  Do you know if the names of the abilities have been finalized?

    [Passive] Warmth – Dealing Fire damage applies a snare to enemies.

    The name does not seem to suit the ability.  Would be better to call this one Searing Heat and change the name of Searing Heat to “Slow Burn” or something else, IMO.

    Gladerunner said on September 16, 2013 :

    Some men just want to watch the world burn.

    @Gladerunner

    Excuse me.  One of these years I’ll figure out how to embed a video on TF.

     

  10. Profile Photo
    Catches-Magical-Lightning

    Novice

    Total Posts: 12

    Argonian Sorcerer

    Can’t wait for the sorcerer!

  11. Profile Photo
    Atropos

    Administrator

    Total Posts: 3070

    Imperial Sorcerer

    Entropy Rising

    Tribe said on September 16, 2013 :

    Thank you very much for the article.  Do you know if the names of the abilities have been finalized?

    I’m sure some abilities will get their names changed between now and launch. I would expect changes at some point.

    Founder, creator, and developer of Tamriel Foundry.

    Guildmaster of Entropy Rising.

    Occasional Twitch Streamer.

  12. Profile Photo
    Marsh-Shadow

    Master

    Total Posts: 571

    Argonian Sorcerer

    An-Xileel

    Thanks for putting this together Atropos!

  13. Profile Photo
    Akinikx

    Novice

    Total Posts: 13

    Dunmer Nightblade

    I could see this tree being nasty with the dunmer’s natural fire damage racial ability. These dragonknights are going to be lethal in the pvp realm. cant wait to see them in action

    The blood of the Dunmer burns bright, we take each step with one goal in our mind, Imperial City under the control of the Ebonheart.

  14. Profile Photo
    Aillorian

    Adept

    Total Posts: 102

    Imperial Nightblade

    looks good so far, still looking forward to seeing the skills from the other two classes as well, i may end up changing my mind on what i want :)

  15. Profile Photo
    Ravin

    Grandmaster

    Total Posts: 1252

    Altmer Templar

    Dragonknight will be fun to play.

    Death is a guarantee;  Life is not.

  16. Profile Photo
    Deszio

    Journeyman

    Total Posts: 65

    Imperial Sorcerer

    Finally!  Next is the Templar.  I still will play the classes in game to decided my main.

      

  17. Profile Photo
    m aIq

    Expert

    Total Posts: 250

    Dunmer Sorcerer

    Discover Eventide

    Great stuff, very excited to see the sorcerer lines.  Not sure if this had been addressed yet: I know Mages and Fighters guild trees are unlocked by ranking up with the Guilds, but are abilities in the class and race trees unlocked by leveling up skills in the tree or by overall level?

  18. Profile Photo
    Galahad

    Expert

    Total Posts: 371

    Imperial Templar

    Lowly Knights of Stendarr

    Saaaweeeeet!!! This is geat. Thanks @Atropos

  19. Profile Photo
    HypeRNT

    Banned

    Total Posts: 386

    yeah finally its put up on TF, however been leaked months ago. At-least now you can talk about it on this forum. The third and 2nd skill lines are pretty tanky with the third being more for your group members as well as yourself compared to the second mostly for yourself.

     

    I would like to know racial abilities more then the skill lines(probably cuz they been leaked so long ago) i would like to see what bosmer offers and what altmer racials are.

  20. Profile Photo
    Otiros Wyrmeye

    Novice

    Total Posts: 15

    Nord Dragonknight

    All of these class articles have been great so far! I can’t wait to see the Sorcerer article when it is published!

    Otiros Wyrmeye the Barbarian

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